Thursday, January 30, 2020

Snowflakes, Intelligent Design, And Beauty

        One objection to intelligent design theory is the formation of snowflakes. This argument against intelligent design can be articulated in the following manner:

         "The formation of a snowflake is a great example of order coming from randomness, both in terms of gaseous water molecules moving chaotically going to water molecules in a very specific structure, and because the underlying reason for doing that is the second law of thermodynamics, which ultimately is due to energy becoming more randomly distributed."

         Firstly, "chaos theory" is a description of a progressively complex arrangement of matter. There are factors in this process that remain a mystery to us.

         Secondly, snowflakes most certainly do have impressive looking structures. However, they are not functional systems with meaningful information. Snowflakes lack the specific type of complexity that a biological system has.

          Thirdly, snowflakes are a consequence of the Designer's supernatural act of creation (how He ordered scientific laws). This would be analogous to human beings creating robots which in turn could work in the manufacturing of vehicles or medical equipment. Intelligence (which requires the existence of a mind) is still involved.

          Fourthly, meaningful design and order are always the result of intelligence. The universe has such characteristics. Therefore, it is reasonable to believe that an Intelligent Mind created our universe. Moreover, some have inferred from beauty itself that God must exist. Peter Kreeft, professor of philosophy, articulates this argument as follows:

         "...An argument from beauty may go as follows: symmetry, that’s imitation like kaleidoscopes or round stained glass, is often a great producer of beauty. We recognize beautiful accidental symmetry in nature, like an order of stones on the beach. But what do these random organizations reflect if there is no organization to be had in the first place? Reflections are only as good as the thing they reflect, so the beauty cannot be in the rocks themselves, no matter how many times it multiplies. So there must be a transcending beauty in relation to all creation. Other aspects of beauty that demand explanation is why we find it valuable, why we find its creation valuable, why we find its contemplation and consummation valuable, and why we don’t seem to find any natural sort of ugliness in nature."

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